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Latest car fire in Hollywood believed to be work of arsonist

December 30, 2011 | 10:22 pm

Investigators believe the car fire that burst out in an underground garage off Hollywood Boulevard about 7 p.m. Friday was started by the same person or people who committed the spate of arsons across Hollywood and West Hollywood in the pre-dawn hours.

"We believe that it's a good possibility that the individuals responsible for the fires this morning are responsible for the fire that occurred tonight," Los Angeles Fire Capt. Jaime Moore said.

The latest fire, in an underground garage on Sycamore Avenue beneath the L.A. Fitness health club that faces Hollywood Boulevard, brings to 22 the numbers of fires in one of the worst arson rampages in recent Los Angeles history.

Photos: Hollywood arson fires

Nearly all of the fires, which started just after midnight, began when a vehicle was set ablaze. Several times the flames jumped to nearby apartment buildings or houses, causing significant damage at some of the locations.

Among the properties damaged was the Hollywood Hills home where The Doors' Jim Morrison once lived and which inspired his song "Love Street." Estimates on the total cost of the damage were not available, although officials from the Los Angeles County Fire Department said that four fires set in West Hollywood alone destroyed about $350,000 worth of cars and property.

Friday night's fire destroyed a single car. There were no injuries, officials said.

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 -- Gale Holland

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